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Saint Michael's Mount, Cornwall f.190

Saint Michael's Mount, Cornwall f.190

Artist: Buckler, John Chessell

Medium: Pencil on paper

Date: 1821

Shelfmark: Additional MS 36360

Item number: f.190

Length: 26.4

Width: 35.4

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Topographical Drawing

St Michael's Mount is separated from the town of Marazion and the mainland by a 500 yard long granite causeway. A Benedictine chapel was founded here in 1044 by Edward the Confessor in a grant to the Abbey of Mont Saint Michel in Brittany. Over the centuries, the castle grew in size as it passed through its various guises as priory, fortress and family home.

Perched majestically as it is on top of its "island", the castle has commanding views out to sea and along this part of the Cornish coast. In July 1588, a lookout on the Mount made the first sighting of the approach of the Spanish Armada and the alarm was raised. The Spanish galleons were unsuccessful this time but they returned in 1595 and set fire to several settlements along the coast. The 200 raiders were finally repulsed by Sir Francis Goldolphin and from this time the Mount had a permanent garrison funded by the Crown.

In 1646, during the Civil War, the Mount surrendered to Parliamentarian soldiers and in the following year it transferred to the St Aubyn family who made the castle their family seat for over 300 years.

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